The Pursuit of Justice Versus The Fulfillment of Self-Interest in The Odyssey and Electra

If one were to closely analyze the actions that are carried out by the characters in both The Odyssey and Electra, it would be quite difficult to assess what the standards of true justice are in such era of ancient Greece. Certain instances suggest that they work strictly through a measure of balance while others conclude that the people simply do whatever is necessary in order to obey the Gods. However, for every incident that leads to a potential answer, something happens that contradicts it and the reader is left to assume nothing more than that it is a chaotic society that lacks any logic or reason. In a series of brutal encounters, there is always a question of the motives that exist ...

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killed for their behavior. Death is served for even the most miniscule examples of misbehavior, such as inhospitality. There seems to be a general ideology that exists among both men and Gods within their culture that perceives the act of killing another human being to be of relative insignificance. Obviously, in today’s society, we consider the cruelest form of retribution towards someone to be in the form of taking such person’s life or the life of their loved ones. However, it appears that in The Odyssey, whether or not the person performing the murder has made such decision themselves (as opposed to being told to do so through divine order), the characters view death as something that’s completely reasonable in almost all cases. To such people, to kill another man is the equivalent of our decision to simply put him in jail.

In order to gain a better comprehension of the internal process of reason that occurs within these men, one must try to place themselves during such time ...

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for those who live under such apathetic standards towards violence. But then there are others who share the exact same fate, such as Amphinomous, who display many esteemed qualities, giving the reader a reason to believe that they may be granted pardon for their initial misdoings. By placing all of the suitors in a single, large class of thieves and villains, who must all pay for their actions in the same manner, Odysseus becomes dehumanized to a degree. It seems that a more qualified way of handling the situation would be to judge each suitor on an individual basis, discerning from there as to whether such man is capable of undergoing a change in their moral state of living. But ...

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Added: 11/12/2011 01:17:31 PM
Submitted By: DPlainvew
Category: English
Words: 1676
Pages: 7

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